Monday, June 22, 2009

Daycare Decisions

We finally have a daycare decision/solution!! As you know, daycare has been a struggle for us. We currently have Micah in daycare one day a week at our third-choice daycare. Nearly two weeks ago, we were offered a full-time spot in the Fall with our first-choice daycare. I went in to speak to our current daycare location to see when Micah would be switched to the older room and if we could increase days in the Fall, and we were informed that it would be unlikely they would either move him or increase his hours until he was at least 15-18 months old. I was upset by that news, but relieved that it gave us an easy excuse to leave the daycare. While we like the daycare center, we have not been pleased with the current primary caretaker for Micah.

We decided to go check out our first-choice again before making a final decision, and we also found another daycare recommended by a friend with an open full-time spot. We went to visit both places, and we still felt that our original first-choice was still the best place for Micah (although this new option is significantly less expensive). Our biggest hesitation was that the offer was for "full-time daycare" - we just were not sure if that was best for us. After learning that the daycare rates increased by nearly $200/month at our first-choice location since we initially went on the wait list, we became certain that we preferred a part-time slot.

Initially, we were told there were no part-time slots available. After some begging on our part and hard work on the daycare center's part, we were told we could have a part-time slot, but it would be Tuesdays and Thursdays. On the one hand, I thought that might work out fine, and we could hire a babysitter to cover the other days as needed. However, I then remembered that Micah and I are enrolled in a class on Thursdays in the Fall, and we would have to skip out on daycare Thursday afternoons for 16 weeks to attend our class (a thought that really bothered me - who wants to pay for daycare and not use it??). We also continued to discuss whether we should just accept the full-time slot. DH and I discussed and debated, and we decided that we still preferred part-time over full-time, so we were all ready to accept Tuesdays and Thursdays.

When I called back to accept, I was told they might be able to work it out so that we can have Monday, Wednesday and Friday instead, but she needed a few more days to figure it out. Naturally we were confused about what to do. The problem with Monday, Wednesday and Friday is Federal holidays and vacation weekends - you have to pay for those days even when the daycare is closed or if you leave town and do not use them. After much discussion, several changes of heart, and a lot of trepidation, we committed today to daycare on Monday, Wednesday and Friday next year (beginning in September). Micah will be in the junior toddler room, which includes fun activities like music, art and gym. They also provide a hot lunch and snacks everyday for the kids. Everyday, they go outside and play on the playground (as long as the weather isn't too cold, too hot or too wet). He will be crawling around, playing with toys, and socializing with other children his age, and I am hoping it is a wonderful experience for him. I think we will do our best to limit how long he is there - at most, we will leave him there from 9:30 to 4:30 or *maybe* 5 on occasion.

I hope we made the right decision! We have to submit our registration form and fees, and then we are all set. Once we do that and lock down our spot, I think we will give our notice of termination to our current daycare provider. We are still waiting to hear if they will have a spot in the junior toddler room open, but I think this ship has sailed and it is time to switch providers.


eve said...

Ugh! Child care decisions are SOOOOOOOO hard!!! We have also struggled with this issue with Sam. I have a sitter who watches Sam all day Mondays and Thursdays for us during the summer, the rest of the time I work my hubby is home soon enough to care for Sam. Next year will be MUCH easier because he's going into pre-school two days a week.

No decision (or at least most) is irreversible. If you start this schedule next year and find that it doesn't work'll just adjust!


Julie said...

I hope it works out -sounds like it'll be fun for Micah.

Chele said...

Good luck! I hope everything goes smoothly.

Kari said...

sounds like this will be a change for the best! I bet Micah will have tons of fun!

Beautiful Mess said...

Daycare choices and decisions are so tough. Sounds like you and your husband gave it a lot of thought. I'm sure Micah will have a BLAST and learn so much! I was a teacher/got to play with the "wobblers" back in the day and it was SO much fun! We use to do lots of fun things like finger painting with pudding and such. Have fun!

Prather Family said...

I'm sorry the child care decison are so difficult but it sounds like you made a good decision and Micah will have fun time learning with the other children and you can still have him with you when you want as well. I hope all goes well in the fall with the transition.

Lisa RM said...

Daycare decisions- my favorite. Note the sarcasm.